Last year I was on a committee of 6 women to host the inaugural CowBelle Classic ride. The event was described on the registration website as follows: “CowBelle Classic is a women’s only cycling event hosted by the Boone Area Cyclists Club. Women of all ages and abilities are invited to ride in a non-competitive, social environment. By providing mentoring for new riders, we are expanding the community of women cyclists in our region.” The purpose of the event was to emulate the motto, “all women, two wheels, one community.”
This event iss unique because not only is it the first ride specifically for women in the High Country, it is also the first organized large-scale ride that the Boone Area Cyclists (BAC) have sponsored. In the past, this organization has focused on participation, education, volunteer work, and community building, but this event marked the first BAC hosted ride of it’s size. The mission of the BAC is “to develop, coordinate, and promote safe and accessible bicycling opportunities in the geographic area of Boone, North Carolina.” The CowBelle Classic Event met this goal by bringing together women to ride in an organized event, promoting safe cycling practices and building community.
This year we had the second annual CowBelle Classic on August 26th, and we offered even more route options. There was a 15 mile, 18 mile, 35 mile, and 64 mile option. We started at 8am under crisp and slightly foggy conditions, but the weather cleared up and made for a great day. I rode the 64 mile option and enjoyed beautiful views and great company. It was nice riding with a group in a non-race setting, and I set my new personal metric century record riding 64 miles in 3 1/2 hours. Following the ride, we were able to eat lunch at the Old Cove Creek School and it was a great way to connect with the other female cyclists in the community. We have already scheduled the next ride for the last Saturday in August 2018, and I’m excited for the continued success of the ride.